April 20


The loss of civility in Texas redistricting

George Korbel has spent four decades fighting redistricting battles in this state – long enough to remember when the process was semi-amicable.

“When we were doing redistricting in the ‘80s, whenever we took depositions around the state, we flew on the state plane with the attorneys for the state,” says Korbel, a civil-rights attorney who has helped the League of United Latin American Citizens present its challenge to maps drawn up last year by the GOP-dominated Legislature. “We stayed in the same hotels and ate together.”

Korbel moved to San Antonio from Minnesota in 1971, and his early legal work played a key role in this state’s adoption of single-member voting districts and its inclusion within the requirements of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. When he advocates in court for minority representation, as he regularly does, he’s finessing legal guidelines that he helped to create four decades ago.

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